Day 1 – Friday 7th February
Fly London to Cairo with EgyptAir and on arrival we check-in to the first-class Movenpick Hotel at Giza for one night on room and breakfast basis.

Day 2 – Giza
Our first day begins with the short ride to the Giza plateau to explore the Great Pyramids, the satellite pyramids, mortuary temples and causeways before heading to the mighty Sphinx and Valley Temple. In the afternoon we leave Cairo and travel to the Faiyum where we check in to the Auberge Hotel on the shore Lake Qarun for two nights on half board basis. (BD)

Day 3 – The Faiyum
Today we explore some of the lesser known and rarely visited pyramid fields. We begin at Meidum with its spectacular pyramid and the fascinating ‘Mastaba 17’ either of which can be entered by the more adventurous. Next to Lahun pyramid set at the desert’s edge before continuing to Hawara.  At Hawara we view the pyramid of Amenemhat III and Dylan will explain the site of the Labyrinth where Petrie unearthed the famous Faiyum Portraits. We have a picnic lunch today provided by the Auberge. (BLD)

Day 4 – Beni Hassan
We leave the Faiyum and head south stopping at the lovely Middle Kingdom tombs of Beni Hassan with their striking paintings and wonderful views over the Nile. Further south, we come to the fabulous tombs at Meir. Everything about these tombs is special, from the style of art and the unusual scenes depicted, to their spectacular location in the cliffs above the Nile Valley. We have a picnic lunch provided by the Auberge before continuing to Asyut. On arrival we board the M/S Tut – a floating hotel moored on the banks of the Nile on full board basis for two nights. (BLD)

Day 5 – Nefertiti at Amarna
We head off to meet Barry Kemp at Amarna. Today Barry will escort us around this fascinating city and give us all the latest news on his work here. We will travel along the Royal Wadi to the Tomb of Akhenaten where we find extraordinary scenes of both triumph and tragedy, depicting Nefertiti and the royal princesses. We will also enter the Southern Tombs with the unfinished tomb of Ay and head into the city where we will explore the central area, the Royal Archive and the Sanctuary of Aten. We also look at the Northern Palace, residence of the royal women, and the Northern Tombs cut high into the surrounding cliffs. We return to Asyut for our second night. (BLD)

Day 6 – The Wonders of Abydos
We start our day with the short journey to Akhmim, ancient Ipu, and the magnificent statue of Meritamun which stands to a height of 35 feet. Then we head south to Abydos to explore one of the glories of ancient Egypt, the Temple of Seti I. The raised relief decorations in this temple are among the best in Egypt and many vibrant colours remain we also see the famous ‘King List’. We study the mysterious Osireion and then we head out across the desert sands for a few minutes walk to view the Temple of Ramesses II with its striking Kadesh battle reliefs. After our picnic lunch provided by the M/S Tut we drive to Dendera and enter the Ptolemaic Temple of Hathor. We see the newly cleaned and restored walls and ceilings. This lovely temple features the only depiction of Cleopatra VII with her son Caesearion to be found in Egypt. We continue to Luxor an on arrival check-in to the Old Winter Palace, Garden Pavilion Wing, for five nights on a room and breakfast basis. (BL)

Day 7 – The West Bank
We take our private launch across the river to join our vehicle and we head straight to the Valley of the Kings. Here we enter three tombs. We will also walk to the door of Hatshepsut’s tomb and talk about the tomb’s strange legacy. From here, we ascend the mountain path for the walk over the mountain of Meretsegar, ‘She who loves silence’ for the most spectacular views of the whole of the West Bank. We descend via Deir el Medina where we have entry to the tombs of the artisans and view the Ptolemaic Temple of Hathor. We rest and take lunch at the Moon Valley Restaurant before heading to Hatshepsut’s magnificent temple at Deir el Bahri, which we will explore at length. We move on to the Valley of the Nobles where we look at the striking images of women in the tombs of Ramose, Userhat and Khaemhat. Our final stop of the day is the Colossi of Memnon, taking special note of Tiye and Mutemwia. (BL)

Day 8 – Nefertari
Again we cross the river, the traditional romantic way, by small motor launch and on arrival make the short ride for the stunning highlight of the trip in to The Queens’ Valley. We have a special permit to enter the Tomb of Nefertari, perhaps the most famous of all Egyptian Queens, principal wife of Ramesses II and often seen with the Pharaoh in artwork and sculpture. This tomb is spectacular and it is a rare and extraordinary privilege to enter it. We will also enter the other open tombs in the Valley of Queens and Princes. Our final visit today is the impressive Temple of Ramesses III, Medinet Habu. This afternoon free time to enjoy the facilities of the hotel. (B)

Day 9 – The Temple of Amun
We have an early breakfast and then head to Karnak and the Temple of Amun. We take a tour of this greatest of temples where we will explore the legacy of Hatshepsut and much else besides. We take special time to explore the open-air museum to see the lovely White Chapel, the Alabaster Chapel and of course the reconstructed Red Chapel and White Chapel of Hatshepsut. We return to the hotel for some free time although you can stay on at Karnak if preferred. Late afternoon we will make the short walk to Luxor Temple to view the reliefs as the sun goes down and floodlights come on. (B)

Day 10 – Optional el Kab
Today could be your day to relax by the pool or head to the souk for some shopping. Alternatively join us on an optional excursion by road to the fascinating site of el Kab with its 18th Dynasty rock-cut tombs, the small temple of Amenhotep III and the ancient inscriptions at ‘Vulture Rock’. We will stop at Mo’alla to view the Governor Anhktify’s tomb and return via the often overlooked Temple of Montu at el Tod. For those on the optional excursion, a packed lunch is included. (B)

Day 11– Monday 17th February
Fly Luxor to London with EgyptAir arriving later the same day. (B)

Expert: Dylan Bickerstaffe, is well known for his publications, lectures, and TV work on the royal mummies and cache tombs. He has also made a special study of the Egyptian Labyrinth at Hawara. 

(B) = Breakfast (BL) = Breakfast and Lunch (BLD) = Breakfast Lunch and Dinner




DEPARTURE DATE  Friday 14th November 2014





LAND ONLY DISCOUNT: £450  (If you arrange your own international flights)

Optional el Kab excursion: £80 per person


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